Friday of the 5th week in ordinary time

1 Kings 11: 29-32; 12:19       Mark 7: 31-37

Theme: Jesus is our model

In the gospel reading of today from St. Mark, we see how Jesus healed the deaf man and he also had speech impediment. It is interesting to read and listen to how Jesus went outside the Jewish territory to heal all those who came to him requesting for his help. It was not recorded anywhere that Jesus drove away anybody who came to him to seek for one help or the other. Sometimes, he will simply test the faith of the person who needs his help. Another interesting thing is the fact that Jesus never collected money from any of those he healed at any point in time, at least there is no record of that in the scripture. Also, Jesus tried as much as possible to run away from publicity, that is why after healing the people, he will tell them not to go and publicize what he has done for them.

The way Jesus went about his ministry, should be a source of great reflection for ministers and Christians in our own time. He did not collect money for consultation from the people, he did not sell any anointing water to the people, and he ran away from any form of publicity. Interestingly, all these things are part of the practices in our own time. When miracles are done, we want them to be publicized, because it will bring us more followers, whether the miracles are real or staged managed. We will collect money for consultation and anointing water. The question today is, where did we learn these practices from, because it is not from the master himself. Now is the time for us to retrace our steps and embrace what is good and right in the practice of our faith.

In the 1st reading of today, we see the fulfilment of the pronouncement of God to Solomon in yesterdays reading. The prophet Ahijah told Jeroboam to take ten of the tribes of Israel. We all have something to learn from what plays out in the 1st reading of today, God is always faithful, whatever he says will be fulfilled. We must be mindful of our actions and the choices we make in our daily lives. Never think you are standing, lest you fall, and never think you are very close to God and begin to be careless with your life, lest you make a grievous mistake. May the Lord bless his words in our hearts, in the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit, Amen. Peace be with you.

Friday of the 5th week in ordinary time, by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp